A life-changing diagnosis

I have some personal news to share, but it isn’t the easiest to put into words.

Those closest to me already know, but I wanted to share this info with everyone because it has literally upended my life and will continue to change how I live forever onward.

I was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer on March 11th, 2021.

I have invasive ductal carcinoma, which is the most common type of breast cancer (making up for 80–85% of all cases). My cancer has spread to a lymph node in my underarm, which is why it’s Stage 2.

I am 27 years old.

Breast cancer for women in their 20s and 30s makes up fewer than 5% of all cases.

What I have isn’t a rare disease, but it’s extremely rare that a woman my age be diagnosed with it. What’s more, not a single person on either side of my family has ever had breast cancer, so naturally this news came as a big shock, a big slap in the face.

And I’m not going to pretend I’m not mad about it. I’m super fucking pissed off.

I’ve spent all of 2020 paying down my student loans (I’m almost fully paid off with the ones in my own name!) so my boyfriend and I could finally buy a house this year. We were making big plans, and this put a wrench in all of them. I know it’s time to be focused on my journey to wellness, but man if this isn’t some “fuck your plans” news, lol.

I know everything happens for a reason, but I can’t find one good damn reason this is happening to me now. I feel like a fraud even typing any of this as I still can’t wrap my head around it.

Frustrations aside, I’ve already had my first appointment with my cancer team, and my treatment plan will consist of chemotherapy (every 3 weeks for a combined 16 weeks), surgery (TBD on type), and radiation. My total plan of treatment will pretty much take all year (mid April to late November).

I begin chemo on April 15th, 2021.

Chemotherapy will likely cause me to lose my hair.

This is hugely devastating news for me as my extremely long hair is a major part of my identity. It hasn’t fully sunk in yet, but it’s something I’m mentally preparing myself to happen for 2–3 weeks after my first chemo treatment. In the grand scheme of things, hair will grow back and getting the right treatment is more important, but it’s still a hard pill to swallow.

I will be trying something out called a cooling cap during my treatments, which may reduce the severity of hair loss. I am very hopeful that it will help slow the inevitable.

While my rate of success and survival are relatively high thanks to my age and good health, you never know what could happen. I’m going in with a positive mindset, but sometimes I’m going to have really shitty days. So I’d love all of the positive support and energy you guys have to help me through the process.

Please keep me in your prayers, prayer circles, thoughts, well-wishes, spells – literally everything – and any other good thoughts and vibes my way. I need all of the emotional support I can get, and I’m leaning on you for that. If you can’t do anything else, please do this for me.

I’m so fortunate to have an incredible support system from my family, my boyfriend, and my boyfriend’s family among other close friends who have already reached out and been here to support me.

Thanks for listening, sending prayers up, and keeping me in your thoughts.

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